Last night's "Project Runway" illuminated strengths and weaknesses in the four remaining designers headed to Mercedes Benz Fashion Week.
In the episode before the remaining designers head to Mercedes Benz Fashion Week, Heidi Klum unleashed on what she didn't like. For most of the season, Heidi Klum is a somewhat conservative critic, particularly compared to Michael Kors. Usually Heidi saves her most debilitating comments for when the designers have left the stage.
Anya Chee, perhaps overwhelmed and exhausted, wasn't prepared for Tim Gunn's visit. On the runway, Heidi Klum smashed Anya for returning to New York not ready to present for Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. It's clear that all season long, Anya Chee was inspired by the competition, her fellow designers, and New York City. Anya's return to Trinidad seem to put the poor girl on Island time.
When Tim Gunn arrived to critique Anya's collection, Anya had nothing. Not even a sketch. She had beautiful fabric, but that was it. Anya placed fourth after Kim. On the runway in New York, Anya's designs weren't inspired, perhaps indicative that she needed the challenges to inspire her creations. Anya's most unflattering outfit was a bathing suit and a long overcoat. But her first look, an intense evening dress with great fabric wowed the judges. But other than that, they really didn't like her clothes. This wasn't a sewing issue, Anya had a design issue.
Anya Chee's three looks click here.
Heidi Klum gave designer Kim a hard time for the volume, design and color palette of Kim's second look, a blue blouse and pink skirt. While Michael Kors appreciated the way Kim played with the volume in the back of the skirt, Heidi Klum called the design a "bubble butt." Heidi Klum also told Kim she disliked the color pairing. Nina Garcia, meanwhile, withheld her dislike for Kim's tropical inspired color palette until Kim left the stage.
Kim's critique was interesting and the pink "bubble butt" dress was indicative of the elephant in the room when it comes to Kim's designs. Kim's inspiration is the African American girl from the city who's remained in her urban neighborhood after gentrification. Tim Gunn and Michael Kors are inspired by Kim's aesthetic and point of view. Kors complimented Kim for redefining sexy and using nudity in the back of a design, rather than the front.
Kim designs for a very bold customer. Whoever the girls and women are that wears Kim's clothes, I am a little afraid of them. But Kim's great and it's great to know she competed in Fashion Week.
Nina Garcia, however, remained really quiet about Kim. Except to tell her that her styling was appalling.
Joshua M. was the surprise of the evening. Joshua M. got the beat down from Tim Gunn. During Gunn's visit to Joshua's home, Joshua's line looked cheap and made Tim Gunn want to cry. Joshua's facial expression of exasperation during confessional was priceless. Although speechless and stunned by Tim Gunn's critique, Joshua regrouped and rebounded really well. He landed second place in the move to Fashion Week.
Joshua had one piece the judges hated. A long black dress that moved really well and looked good on the runway and under the lights. But the dress was a masquerade for a pair of tight fitting knit jeggings. The back of the dress was a pair of pants. Each of Josh's looks had an intriguing and attractive geometrical top shape that the judges appreciated.
Aside from the jegging dress, and a bad idea on the back of on his other outfits (a zipper and a gap in the back that looked like an unfinished hole) Joshua's designs were not over the top, he did not need an editor. Joshua working alone and on his own away from the other contestants softened his competitive edge and allowed him to show his real and clean design ideas. And that's a good thing. If nothing else, Joshua M. proved last night that all the money he spent on Fashion School wasn't wasted because he's a good student. He doesn't need to edit himself as much as he needs a good critique from a master stylist. (that's going to cost him in the real world).
Joshua M. click here
In what is, perhaps, the sweetest "Project Runway" season ever, Michael Kors, Heidi Klum and Nina Garcia kept their remaining four contestants. This was wonderful news for designer Kim who was happy she made third place, but genuinely happier when Anya Chee was given a break and allowed the fourth spot.
The other two contestants, Josh and Viktor, weren't so thrilled about Anya's being there. Viktor thought she didn't fare well on the runway with her final three looks. Joshua felt neither Kim nor Anya should be in the final competition to show at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week.
Viktor placed first in the competition to present his collection at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. Surprisingly, Viktor needed an editor for the three looks he presented in last night's episode. His elegantly simple, yet punchy and fashion forward cocktail dress didn't need the extra leather skirt, punk. goth layer. Viktor's white puff, cottonball jacket, judges inexplicably loved. Heidi Klum liked the jacket so much she tried it on. But Viktor paired the white cottonball thing with an elegant and dramatic maxi.
The judges pointed out to Viktor that while they loved his jacket, it looked great on Heidi because Heidi was dressed in black and white casual.